The Life is a member of the mint family and derives its name from the powerful and lingering scent of curry when the leaves or stems are crushed. It is indigenous to North America, especially around North and South Carolina, and has long been used for countless healing and therapeutic purposes.
Known variously by the Latin name Helicrysium stoechas and by the local name of cudweed, Life Everlasting Flowers appear on downy stalks in numerous crowds of white flowers. They carry a supportive and comforting aroma and are known to induce sleep.
The Life Flowers are commonly recommended in herbal meditation blends for encouraging spirituality and personal growth. The aroma is believed by some to open the right side of the brain, improving creativity and dream activity. The flowers are also valued particularly for their decorative beauty in dried floral arrangements and wreaths that last for years. Dried herbs of the plant make a relaxing tea infusion or bath.
The Life Flower herb is a perennial root that creeps and propagates easily almost like a troublesome weed. But its medicinal and therapeutic applications are extensive. Some people have chewed the leaves and flowers as a remedy for mouth and throat ulcerations and they are used regularly as a natural astringent. The Life Everlasting herb was even a substitute for smoking tobacco with New England fisherman. Smoking the herb in a different way by inhaling the smoke of the burning herb was at one time considered good for coughs of the lungs and headache. Fresh juice from the Life Everlasting Flower has been said to be an aphrodisiac. The flowers are attributed with a small litany of properties: expectorant, diaphoretic, anodyne, astringent, ectoral, and expectorant, to name a few. The Life Everlasting Flowers are applied for problems with pulmonary. diarrhea, dysentary, coughs, colds, pains in the breast. Powders and warm infusions of the Life Everlasting herb have been used in leucorrhea, diseases of the bowels, and for hemorrhages. The herb is used in poultices for sprains, painful swellings, bruises, boils, bug bites-even tumors and contusions.
The Life Everlast-Flower is steeped in American Indian history. Different tribes used decoctions to treat a myriad of neurological and skin disorders. They made tea infusions with the flowers for asthma, bronchitis, and colds. Currently, the Life Everlasting Flower has been increasingly used in blends for skin and bad bruises for how it seems to reabsorb blood into tissue and remove pain and discoloration from nerve damage.
The therapeutic and medicinal versatility of the prolific life everlasting flower is as prodigious as its name. Its gentle but powerful healing has lasting effects, from teas and baths to old fashioned wreaths.